The Rohingya crisis has (finally) stirred international public opinion and mainstream media interest, putting increasing pressure on Aung San Suu Kyi to respond, but what is aberrant and surprising is her silence, a silence full of meaning coming from the recipient of the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of thought and the Nobel Peace Prize! During her house arrest and her ban from accessing the Burmese political sphere, the West was her lifeline thanks to its support over the years through the fundamental values of universal morality (the rejection of selfishness, the pursuit of the common good, and the human being as the finality of any action). These values have allowed Aung San Suu Kyi to cross the desert and gain access to the current position she is holding now as the State Counsellor of Myanmar. Thus, when the army and the Buddhist majority threaten some Burmese (in this case the Rohingya, who were stripped of Burmese citizenship by the military junta’s 1982 decree), the world’s citizens expect Aung San Suu Kyi to display the same morality vis-à-vis ‘her people’, regardless of religion and ethnicity, and to defend the rights of the persecuted. So why has she remained silent? The current Rohingya crisis is just the tip of the iceberg! There is only one possible answer: Aung San Suu Kyi preferred political utilitarianism to universal morality. When she was under house arrest, she loudly subscribed to Western values; she prided herself on defending democracy (‘I do protect human rights, and I … Continue reading Aung San Suu Kyi and The Rohingya Crisis… Or When Political Utilitarianism Overrules Universal Morality!
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